The day before a marathon is always one of my favorite days. It's become tradition for me to spend the day doing anything I feel like doing that doesn't require too much physical activity. I just had a healthy lunch at Pure Fare, and now I'm blogging from Good Karma Cafe while sipping on a mint and rose flavored iced cafe au lait. It's 66 degrees and sunny, and life is beautiful in Philadelphia on this perfect spring day. Pre-marathon day also involves a ridiculous amount of carbs, so how can today be bad?
Carb loading, Michael Scott style
The past 24 hours have involved some amazing, yet simple activities so far, all putting me in a fantastic frame of mind for the Delaware Trail Marathon tomorrow. This boost of positivity is about 98% due to the gorgeous spring weather we're experiencing in Philadelphia this week, but that's not the point. Here's a few photos from yesterday:
Whiskey walk on the trails after work
Blossoming tree by Kelly Drive
Easy evening run by the Schuylkill River
Skyline view from the Art Museum drive
Today is just as gorgeous as yesterday, with tomorrow promising to be even nicer. The forecast for tomorrow's race is looking great so far, with temperatures increasing and humidity decreasing as the day goes on:
I am surprisingly calm right now for the day before a big race. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that this isn't actually the "big" race of my spring training season, so there's no real pressure. I also haven't tapered at all, which I think is another huge factor. Usually the day before a marathon, I've been reducing mileage for 3 weeks, and my brain and legs are going crazy to run more miles. Since I hit over 50 miles last week and plan on hitting at least 50 miles this week, my body feels strong and my anxiety level is very low. I will, however, begin my taper for the 50k after this race (read: crazy mood swings and inexplicable rage for the next month.)
Needless to say, I still have a few reservations about tomorrow. Though I've done a bunch of online research and talked to a few people who have run the race previously, I still haven't run any trails on this course. Part of that excites me, but mostly it scares me. There's also the 4 creek crossings that are not nearly as intimidating to me now as they were way back in November when I signed up for the race. Finally, I haven't had an honest-to-goodness, quad thrashing, long trail run since my 22 miler four weeks ago.
Nonetheless, I am confident my race plan will help me finish strong. I'm going to start out slow, and walk any extra long or steep hills to conserve energy. I am going to fuel with what my body needs early and often, which includes water from my hydration pack, Hammer gel in a flask for energy, and Succeed S-caps for sodium and potassium replacement. I will try some aid station foods/drinks minimally, but not in excess. I will be happy to finish the race feeling strong and hydrated in around 5 hours, maybe longer.
I am NOT going to get caught up in the competition and run faster than I should, while trashing my legs in the first half and death marching to the finish. I am NOT going to let my pace or splits control my attitude or my race plan.
Finally, I'm thankful Josh will be there to cheer me on at the beginning, middle, and end of the race (it's a two loop course.) I'm sure if I have any doubts or fears at 13.1 he'll be there to talk some sense into me.
I'm done rambling on about the race, but I'll sign off with the current background of my phone for some weekend inspiration...